In the survey entitled “Dirty Diesel”, the NGO Public Eye (ex-Berne Declaration) reveals the unscrupulous practices of Swiss oil traders in Africa. Four investigators worked for three years to unravel the mysteries of toxic gasoline and diesel distributed in Africa by Swiss giants of commodity trading.
The results of this survey published Thursday, September 15 is clear: the fuels sold in Africa have a sulfur content of between 200 and 1000 times higher than in Europe , seriously endangering peoples health expos ed to fine particles and other carcinogens.
Toxic products added to fuels to increase profits
To increase their profits, traders perform mixtures with toxic and particularly harmful to theenvironment and to health. Often risky transactions that take place in port, including Rotterdam, Amsterdam and Antwerp, or at sea a few miles off the coast of Gibraltar or West African ports.
Traders have a name to describe these petroleum products “African quality.” This toxic fuel is up in West Africa, where commodity traders benefit from regulations that still allow the import of diesel and petrol containing a high sulfur content. They made a parallel, opaque market.
In gasoline stations Trafigura, Vitol or Oryx
Public Eye has samples at petrol stations in eight African countries ( Angola , Benin , Congo – Brazzaville , Ghana , Ivory Coast, Mali , Senegal and Zambia ) owned or supplied by these masters of oil trading, as Trafigura, Vitol or Oryx. More than two thirds of the samples contain a sulfur content greater than 1500 parts per million (ppm). With a peak of 3780 ppm in Mali. The limit is 10 ppm in Europe, the US and even China , to count 2017.
Large cities in Africa already suffer from a deplorable quality of the air and a worrying urbanization. By 2050, the population city should triple on the continent. And the number of vehicles expected to increase significantly. The major Swiss players in this market “dirty diesel” say respect the norms. And insist on the efforts of the African Refiners Association (ARA), an organization based in Geneva … and they are members to improve the quality of fuels they import, combine, sell and distribute the continent.
Source: The Monde.fr